Gold declined Friday, pulling prices down for a second weekly decline. Silver also fell on the day and week, the metals first weekly loss in two months.
Gold for August delivery shed $7.60, or 0.6%, to settle at $1,323.40 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.
"With continued equities strength and some additional dollar strength, we saw traders book profits in precious metals, mainly gold and silver," Bloomberg News quoted Phil Streible, a senior commodity strategist at RJO Futures in Chicago. "People are starting to think that thoughts of an interest-rate hike in the U.S. are working their way back into some of the Fed officials’ talks."
Gold futures edged 0.3% lower this week after falling 2.3% last week. The back-to-back weekly loss is the first since May, but do follow six straight weekly gains. The yellow metal is $263.20, or 24.8%, higher than its final 2015 closing price of $1,060.20 an ounce.
In looking ahead to next week, Kitco News offers the following forecasts via their Wall Street vs. Main Street survey:
"Nineteen analysts and traders took part in the Wall Street survey. Nine, or 47%, look for gold to rise next week. Seven, or 37%, are bearish, while the remaining three, or 16%, are neutral.
Meanwhile, 919 Main Street participants submitted votes in either an online or Twitter survey. A total of 451 respondents, or 49%, said they were bullish for the week ahead, while 338, or 37%, were bearish. The neutral votes totaled 130, or 14%."
Elsewhere, silver for September delivery shed 12.6 cents, or 0.6%, to settle at $19.689 an ounce. Silver futures tumbled 2.4% this week, trimming their advance this year to 42.6%. On Wednesday — exactly one week after scoring a nearly two-year high, they marked their lowest close since July 1.
In PGM futures on Friday and for the week:
October platinum fell $19.60, or 1.8%, to $1,088.40 an ounce, for a 0.6% weekly decline.
- Palladium for September delivery edged up 60 cents, or less than 0.1%, to $686.05 an ounce, advancing 6% on the week.
Both metals are higher on the year so far with platinum up 21.9 % and palladium up 22.1%.
London Precious Metals Prices
London precious metals prices were mixed on Friday and for the week. In comparing their levels from Thursday PM to Friday PM:
- Gold dipped 40 cents, or less than 0.1%, to $1,320.75 an ounce.
- Silver rose 36 cents, or 1.9%, to $19.70 an ounce.
- Platinum added $3, or 0.3%, $1,092 an ounce.
- Palladium rose $8, or 1.2%, to $684 an ounce.
For the week in London bullion, gold declined 0.5%, silver fell 2.2%, platinum was unchanged and palladium jumped 6%.
US Mint Bullion Coin Sales in 2016
United States Mint bullion sales improved modestly in the last several days. In the latest week-over-week comparisons:
Gold coin sales advanced 13,000 ounces after rising by 10,500 ounces last week. The weekly splits include 9,500 ounces in American Gold Eagles compared to 9,000 ounces previously, and 3,500 ounces in American Gold Buffalos compared to 1,500 ounces previously.
- Silver coin sales advanced 500,000 ounces after climbing by 445,000 ounces previously. For a fifth week in a row, all sales came from American Silver Eagles.
On Monday, the U.S. Mint announced an end to Silver Eagle rationing. Demand for the coins has slowed sharply in the last few weeks but their sales are still tracking a record. Their year-to-date total of 27,445,500 coins is 12.1% higher than the amount sold through same time in record-breaking year 2015.
Below is a sales breakdown of U.S. Mint bullion products with columns listing the number of bullion coins sold during varying periods of time.
|US Mint Bullion Sales (# of coins)|
|Friday Sales||Last Week||This Week||June Sales||July Sales||2016 Sales|
|$50 American Eagle 1 Oz Gold Coins||0||8,000||7,000||62,500||22,500||428,500|
|$25 American Eagle 1/2 Oz Gold Coins||0||1,000||0||3,000||2,000||48,000|
|$10 American Eagle 1/4 Oz Gold Coins||0||0||4,000||10,000||8,000||94,000|
|$5 American Eagle 1/10 Oz Gold Coins||0||5,000||15,000||70,000||25,000||530,000|
|$50 American Buffalo 1 Oz Gold Coins||0||1,500||3,5000||14,500||8,000||120,500|
|$1 American Eagle 1 Oz Silver Coins||0||445,000||500,000||2,837,500||1,195,000||27,445,500|
|2016 Shawnee 5 Oz Silver Coins||0||0||0||0||0||105,000|
|2016 Cumberland Gap 5 Oz Silver Coins||0||0||0||0||0||75,000|
|2016 Harpers Ferry 5 Oz Silver Coins||0||0||0||34,200||0||34,200|